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Thursday, May 25, 2017
NumbersUSA - Pres. Trump tells The Economist that he doesn't want to cut legal immigration
This Issue: Pres. Trump tells The Economist that he doesn't want to cut legal immigration to the United States
This week's issue of the The Economist
focuses on Pres. Donald Trump's outlook on the global economy,
including his thoughts on legal immigration to the United States where
he said that he doesn't want to cut immigration. The interview sounded
alarm bells for those seeking to reduce existing immigration levels.
with most things policy related that come from the President, his
answer lacked detail, but that doesn't make it any less concerning.
Trump reinforced his commitment to ending illegal immigration, but when
asked if he's seeking to reduce overall numbers, his response was
troubling, but vague.
And what about legal immigration? Do you want to cut the number of immigrants?
Oh legal, no, no, no. I want people to come into the country legally.
No, legally? No. I want people to come in legally. But I want people to
come in on merit. I want to go to a merit-based system.
He was then asked specifically about reducing overall legal immigration numbers.
the numbers of those people could be as high as the numbers that are
coming in legally now? You're not looking to reduce the numbers?
TRUMP: Oh yeah, no, no, no, no, we want people coming in legally. No, very strongly.
spoke more in detail of his plan to replace the existing immigration
system with a merit-based system like Canada's and Australia's. He said
he wants "talented people" who are going to "love our country". He also
said that they'd be ineligible for any sort of public assistance for at
least 5 years.
not tough to meet those standards without reducing legal immigration
numbers. The last two attempts by Congress to pass "comprehensive
immigration reform" (2007 and 2013) included merit-based systems, but
neither system would have limited immigration to only "talented people"
nor would they reduce legal immigration. In fact, both proposals
increased legal immigration by awarding points to foreign citizens who
had previously done low-skilled work in the United States or had
extended family connections to U.S. citizens and green card holders,
regardless of their potential need to rely on public benefits.
what does Trump mean when he says "talented people"? Does "talented
people" include foreign citizens with truly extraordinary skills who
would fill jobs where there's no qualified American worker available?
Or, does "talented people" simply mean someone with a certain level of
education, skills, or experience?
year, more than 800,000 U.S. citizens earn either a master's or
doctorate degree. If Trump's merit-based system is based solely on
educational attainment, those 800,000 U.S. citizens would be forced to
compete for jobs with foreign citizens who have the same educational
attainment without regard for the job market's needs for each field of
During his Joint Address to Congress back in February, Pres. Trump said:
our workers also means reforming our system of legal immigration. The
current, outdated system depresses wages for our poorest workers, and
puts great pressure on taxpayers.
be tough to keep legal immigration numbers at or above 1 million per
year while also protecting wages for vulnerable workers and relieving
the pressure on taxpayers.
entirely possible that Pres. Trump didn't want to come across in the
interview as being against legal immigration, which would be consistent
with some of his past statements on legal immigration. Mark Krikorian
from the Center for Immigration Studies recalled some similar comments
that Trump made during the campaign in his recent column in the National Review.
it's also possible that Trump is being influenced by the same Big
Business and establishment interests that seek increased immigration and
have influenced every President for the last 50 years.
Mark wrote in his column, Trump needs to listen less to Big Business
and more to Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) who introduced the RAISE Act, which
would reduce legal immigration by up to 50% by eliminating the visa
lottery and ending chain migration. Sen. Cotton was the only Member of
Congress to speak out on the Senate floor last week against the omnibus
spending bill that doubled the number of H-2B guest worker visas. (You
can watch Sen. Cotton's Senate floor speech here.)
Trump to listen more to Sen. Cotton is where the voters and the
grassroots activists come in. We've set up a new action where you can
send a message to the White House and a Tweet to Pres. Trump, urging him
to protect American workers by reducing legal immigration. To take
action, click here.
Sabrina Tavernise's May 8 story in the New York Times lives up to its
promise to share the stories of "people whose voices have rarely been
heard in the long debate over how to fix the nation's immigration
The latest Border Patrol report shows that border apprehensions
continued to decline by 9% in April, hitting a new 17-year low. Total
border apprehensions, which are an indicator to the total number of
illegal border crossings, have declined by 76% since Pres. Trump took
A Maryland County is close to finalizing a 287(g) agreement with
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that will allow corrections
officers to use federal databases to screen new inmates for immigration
violations, warrants and prior crimes. Anne Arundel County also wants to
house illegal aliens for ICE at its correctional center.